I got my undergraduate degree in Computer Science from what is now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. The abbreviation for the school is UL Lafayette but since the state abbreviation for Louisiana is LA and the city of Lafayette could be truncated to La, some people envision ULALa and refer to my alma mater as ooh-la-la. As an alumnus, I receive the college magazine. I recently saw a story that I thought I would share.
Wave Robber Land Reclamation Device
"Gaining Ground," La Louisiane, Summer 2013 issue, pages 2-3.
Louisiana has a problem with coastal erosion that is endangering its wetlands. Louisiana loses about 100 yards (the length of an American football field) of land every hour.
Webster Pierce from Cutoff, LA has invented a device he calls the Wave Robber which collects sediment to replenish eroding coastlines. Webster got the idea for his invention by observing other communities that would place discarded Christmas trees along the shore to prevent erosion. When the trees eventually disintegrated, the erosion would resume.
A UL Lafayette research team, led by Dr. Daniel Gang, is testing the Wave Robber in the laboratory and in the field. The college wants to refine the design for commercial viability. One of the researchers is Scott LeBlanc — the Wave Robber is the subject of his master's thesis in civil engineering.
UL Lafayette installed a prototype in Cutoff, LA. Initial results are encouraging as in the first 7 months, the device has stemmed the tide of erosion and collected an inch of sediment.
Deploying the device has proven less costly than creating artificial barriers with rocks and has the advantage that it can be moved to another location after enough erosion has been reversed. The device also operates in harmony with the existing ecosystem.
Federal officials believe the project is worthy of attention, so the next step for the Wave Robber is a demonstration project for the National Resources Conservation Service.
It's great to see the Ragin' Cajuns® help image, design, and create a better world.
Reclamation is alive in the lab.